No. 24 Texas Tech Uses Long Ball to Defeat Iowa State
April 9, 2011
AMES, Iowa - Sandy James smashed a three-run first inning home run and No. 24 Texas Tech never looked back en route to a 15-5 victory Saturday over Iowa State in the Big 12 series opener at the Southwest Athletic Complex.
The win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Red Raiders, who improved to 37-6 on the year and 2-5 in Big 12 play. The Cyclones, meanwhile, dropped 17-16 on the year and 1-4 in league play.
"I was proud of our team for bouncing back with a big day," head coach Shanon Hays said. "I thought Sandy's (James) home run in the first was huge because we were able to put pressure on them early. Hopefully we'll see the same type of performance tomorrow and get good pitching."
James two-run shot in the first jump-started a Tech offense that scored its most runs during Big 12 play in school history. The sophomore brought in Emily Bledsoe and Mikey Kenney on the two-out bomb to right-center field.
Tech broke the game open with a two-out rally in the fourth. Gentsch began the scoring with a RBI bloop single to left field before Bledsoe drove in another run with a bases-loaded walk.
After another run came across off an error from a Randi Tongate pop up, Kenney pushed Tech's lead to 8-0 as her line drive to left field scored Richardson and a fielding error on left fielder Jennifer Drahozal brought in Bledsoe as well.
Gentsch's three-run homer in the fifth proved big as the Cyclones rallied to score five runs in the bottom of the inning which wrecked Tech's chances of ending the game via run rule. Cassie Knutson hit a pinch hit home run to lead off the inning, while Erica Miller came up a few batters latter to deliver a two-run shot of her own.
The two home runs marked the end of Tech starter Kelsey Dennis' (12-1) day as the left-hander gave up three runs off eight hits in four innings of work. Kermitria Ward gave up Tech's final two runs in the fifth before recording a three-up, three-down sixth inning. Ashley Brokeshoulder pitched a perfect seventh inning to close the game.
Kenney led off the sixth for Tech with a solo shot off the foul pole in left while Richardson added a two-run blast in the seventh to keep the Tech offense rolling. Cydney Allen also notched a RBI double in the seventh to end Tech's scoring spree.
The Red Raiders will look for a series sweep Sunday morning as the two teams close the weekend with an 11 a.m. first pitch.
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